Niddrie Brickworks, Niddrie, Edinburgh


The Niddrie Brickworks, near Edinburgh, was a large common brickworks built in 1924 to supply bricks for house building by the Niddrie & Benhar Coal Co. It had three large Hoffman continuous kilns, and latterly, a modern shuttle kiln. The works closed in 1991 and were demolished.

04/04/1878 – Falkirk Herald – On Saturday the annual meeting took place of the Benhar Coal Company Limited  … The lease of the Abercorn brick and clay field on the company’s lands of Duddingston came to an end as at Martinmas 1877 and the directors decided not to renew the lease and that the company should take the work into their own hands. They entered on possession of it at the beginning of the year now current and a siding is being put in order for a large manufacture. There is a large mass of brick clay on the lands and the fire clay which is obtained in the collieries at Niddrie can be advantageously manufactured at these works with the common clay …

04/07/1924 – The Scotsman -In mid, east and west Lothian great developments of the minerals are also taking place. In addition to the new works and housing schemes launched by the Edinburgh Collieries Company (already reported in the Scotsman), the Niddrie and Benhar Coal Company have colliery developments, a new brickwork and housing schemes on hand … A brickwork to give an output of 20,000 bricks a day is being erected near the colliery.

Below – 1934  – Niddrie Fire Clay and Niddrie Brickworks.

15/12/1936 – The Scotsman – Fatal accident at brickworks. Richard Pringle ( 48), of 334 Gayfield Square, Edinburgh, died last night in Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, where he had been taken after receiving spinal injuries as the result of having fallen over a fifteen-foot wall at the brickworks of the Niddrie and Benhar Coal Company.

Below – 1944 – 1967 – Niddrie Fireclay Works.

1947 – 1969 – The 1985 publication ‘A survey of Scottish brickmarks’ suggests that the National Coal Board operated these works during this time.

1969 1984 – The 1985 publication ‘A survey of Scottish brickmarks’ suggests that the Scottish Brick Corporation operated these works during this time.

1984 – GISCOL – Glasgow Iron and Steel Company Limited were the owners until the works closed.

1991 – 1992 – Works closed?

19/08/1995 – The Glasgow Herald – The two 68-year-old, 120ft chimneys of Niddrie Brickworks were demolished on Friday 18/08/1995 as the site was cleared to become a retail park.

Below – A lovely photo of a Niddrie brick and metal stamp. Note the stamp has chamfered edges so in effect this stamp would have created its own frog when pressed into the clay. Equally, this may just be a lead impression of a brick frog ie molten lead is poured into the frog resulting in a lead, copy.

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